Enhancing microphone input with audio effects

Whether you have an ultra high-quality microphone connected to your Mac, or you're using the tiny built-in input, audio effects can enhance the sound of your voice. Using a combination of Audio Hijack and Loopback, you can improve your audio, then send it to others with calling services like Zoom, Skype, FaceTime, and more.

To accomplish this, Audio Hijack is used to pull in audio from the mic and adjust its signal. Audio Hijack then passes the adjusted audio to Loopback, which routes it into any application you like.

One-time setup

To begin adjusting microphone audio, you'll need to configure Loopback and Audio Hijack. This initial setup only needs to be performed once.

Download Loopback

You can visit the Loopback site to learn more, or simply click to download Loopback now.

Create a simple pass-thru device in Loopback

When you launch Loopback for the first time, it will automatically create a basic pass-thru device. This device mimics a physical device plugged in to your Mac, and enables you to route audio from one application to another.

Below, you can see that we've edited this device to give it a more precise name, “Mic Enhancer Pass-Thru”.

That's actually all you'll need as far as set up in Loopback goes. At this point, you can quit Loopback. Even with the Loopback application closed, this virtual device will still be present and available on your system.

Download Audio Hijack

You can visit the Audio Hijack site to learn more, or simply click to download Audio Hijack now.

With the above steps completed, you're now ready to adjust audio.

Configuring Audio Hijack and your voice chat app

Ready to adjust your microphone's audio? Follow these steps.

Make adjustments in Audio Hijack

Audio Hijack is going to do much of the heavy lifting for you. You'll create a pipeline that pulls in your microphone's audio, then adjusts it, before finally passing it along for use elsewhere. The following is a simple example:

In this example, the Input Device block is pulling audio from the microphone. That audio is then adjusted by the AUParametricEQ. Finally, the Output Device sends the audio over to the “Mic Enhancer Pass-Thru” virtual device.

Once you have your pipeline configured, click the Run button in the lower-left corner, and Audio Hijack will begin processing your audio.

Loopback's virtual device is working behind the scenes

Though Loopback isn't open itself, it's working behind the scenes to route audio. The “Mic Enhancer Pass-Thru” virtual device is created and maintained by Loopback, and that's how audio is passed from Audio Hijack and in to your voice chat app.

Select the correct device in your voice chat app

For the final step, you need to select the “Mic Enhancer Pass-Thru” device as your input in your voice chat app. Below, you can see this setting in Zoom:

That's it! Your adjusted audio will then be passed into your voice chat app and heard by others on your call.

Conclusion

Using these instructions, you can improve the quality of microphone audio and pass it on for use in any application you like. To get the perfect sound, experiment and adjust until your audio sounds great.

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